Unplanned Hiatus (and Other Updates)

Good evening all! It's been a while since we've spoken, and I must apologize for my unplanned hiatus. It's always a bit crazy around this house, but that last few weeks have been uniquely crazy. We recently began planning to build a house, which consumed many evenings and weekends, and for the past few weeks (yes, weeks), I've been sick with a terrible sinus infection. I've had a few, brief moments of relief, but this seems to be the worst sinus infection I've ever had. This evening, I'm feeling slightly better, but it's difficult to be hopeful that this will last...I'm trying to be optimistic, though.

Anyway, when we last spoke, we were challenging ourselves to eat better, and I hope you've all succeeded! I hope, too, that you are benefiting from the bountiful local produce available at farmers' markets in the area. We've only got about 6 more weeks of the farmers' markets, but I'm definitely looking forward to autumn produce: apples, pears, winter squash, etc...it also means football, chili, cozy hoodies, and beautifully colored falling leaves. It truly is my favorite time of year!

Speaking of eating better and getting healthy, I recently had blood work done to test my cholesterol levels. The Man had one a few months ago, and his was high, and given my family history and my recent promotion to the 4th decade of my life, I thought it might be a good idea to find out where I stand. Unfortunately, my cholesterol is through the roof...a whopping 256!! Because I'm in otherwise perfect health (minus the chronic sinus infection they finally diagnosed this week), the doctor has prescribed a cholesterol diet, fiber supplement, and red yeast rice (a supplement known to lower cholesterol). And I have to have another blood test in 3 months.

Then I began my research...like I do. I've discovered the keys to lowering cholesterol include the following:

  • decrease dietary cholesterol (less than 300 mg cholesterol daily)
  • increase soluble fiber (fruits, vegetables, beans)
  • increase whole grains (breads, pastas, brown rice)
  • increase omega-3 fatty acids
  • increase healthy fats (nuts, olive oil)
  • decrease saturated fats (meats, dairy, some oils)
My diet is pretty healthy as it is, though I like chocolate and the occasional [bag of] Oreo[s] (teehee), so starting today, for the next three months, I will be a vegetarian - that should cut out what little meat I eat and increase my soluble fiber intake. I'm also going to cut back on dairy - I already drink soy milk, but I am a cheese lover, so... :( We already eat whole grain breads and pastas and brown rice, and I've recently started making granola for my breakfasts, so incorporating more whole grains won't be difficult. I cook with olive oil, but I plan to start snacking on more almonds and less chocolate (and Oreos)... :( 

I'm going to track my food intake with MyFitnessPal, since it will track my cholesterol intake and give me a good idea of the big picture over a period of time. I fear, however, that not having a cholesterol lifeguard in my gene pool means all of this dietary change is pointless - every family member I've spoken to has shared their story of high cholesterol. But it's worth a shot since I don't like taking medications...especially at the tender age of 30. :(

That's all for now. Let's hope I can turn this around without medication! :)

No comments:

Post a Comment